The famous human rights organization Amnesty International has asked the government of Ethiopia to arrest the former US President George W Bush for torturing prisoners in Guantanamo Bay after the Iraq War begun. Some Ethiopians agree with Amnesty International but they say that this is a publicity stunt by Amnesty International, to make Africans believe that Western human rights groups are not focusing only on African dictators but also western leaders. By focusing only on torture charges, Amnesty International is also trying to belittle American crimes during Iraq war, including illegal invasion and the massacre of thousands of unarmed civilians by American soldiers, many Ethiopians believe. However, other Ethiopians support George Bush’s ideology. They say Amnesty International is unrealistic about human rights, naive about security and disconnected from the dangerous world of victims of terrorism.
The case of the Bush administration has sparked the “security vs human rights” debate once again. Supporters of the Security side say George Bush should not be arrested. The pro-security side say a government is justified to disregard some human rights in order to stabilize a country or to defend itself from an enemy. Just like Ethiopia, America has historically restricted freedoms, closed newspapers, illegally detained civilians and done extrajudicial killings during Wars or instability as well as when confronted with African-American activists. The Pro-Security side asserts that America was able to become the most democratic country today after gradually securing peace, prosperity and stability overtime.
Supporters of the pro human rights side say George Bush should be arrested because rights and liberty are more important than security. The pro-rights argument believes security comes after liberty. One of the Founders of United States, Dr. Ben Franklin said that we should not trade liberty for security because, if we do, we may lose both.
It is clear that the Ethiopian government of Prime Minister Meles Zenawi will not arrest George Bush since Meles himself has been accused of serious human rights abuses by Amnesty International. However, should Ethiopia, in principle, arrest George Bush?
Filed Under: Reports
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